World of your own

I don’t want a prestigious career.

I don’t want a lot of money.

I don’t want to sink to the bottom of the sticky bottle.

All I want-

Is somebody that I fancy.

Someone gorgeous and wonderful amazing,

Who’s weird and funny and knows about obscure things,

And here I am in a tree house throwing pebbles at rodents,

Waiting for her.

And beside me Joshua wriggles and slaps his thighs and tells me about his favourite Pokémon.

I’ve heard his story a thousand times before.

He doesn’t care.

I don’t care.

He just talks at me while I look for squirrels.

The women of my life are all called Rosie, Rose, Rosetta, or Mary-Rose.

Why do girls all have the same name?

And how can I expect the one I want to go to my school,

Or find my back garden,

With no hose or even a tap,

To run our hands through in this bright heat?

I’m smiling.

I’m too old for this.

Too young.

Just wrong.

I hate being weird.

I’d hate to be normal too.

The girls my age are far too young.

I want one who’s twenty or thirty,

And I don’t want to be ashamed.

Joshua’s mum is the most beautiful woman in the world.

Most of my friends’ mums are.

I wish I was older.

Being naked must be vibrant when you’re old,

Electrical,

With tingly lips.

“You’re not listening!” Joshua says.

“I’m sorry. I was thinking.”

“You’re in a world of your own Marcus.”

I laugh. Joshua Laughs. I climb out and up onto the roof. He looks at me through the open port-hole.

“I can’t go up there.” He says.

“Why not?”

“I’m scared I’ll die.”

Joshua is even more of a stranger than me. But like most people he doesn’t realise how odd he is.

“You’re in a world of your own.” He says.

I wish I had my own world.

“Come down.” Says Joshua.

I want to be in bed with Miss Braeburn.

I grab a big green apple and climb back in.

“Apple?” I say.

“No thanks. They’re too sour.”

“Joshua?”

“Yes?”

“Do you like girls?”

“No.”

“I like mums.”

Joshua laughs. I laugh.

“You’re in a world of your own Marcus.” He says.

I spot a squirrel in a bush. I throw the apple at it.

Missed.

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